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vtun can work happily without using SSH. However, if one has only SSH access to the tunnel endpoint (i.e. at least one port that is reachable from outside), it might be considered using vtun via SSH as demonstrated here. But this usually comes with some unneeded overhead: double encryption and under some circumstances double compression overhead plus an IP-in-TCP tunnel. That's why the sensible config files given here for download should be used: They explicitly disable encryption and compression. The mentioned overhead is probably the explanation.
OpenSSH 4, however, has already support for tun-interfaces. So if one has admin priviledges on both machines, installing OpenSSH 4 should be considered. And in fact, the vtun-alternative as introduced in this article is dependent on admin rights (at minimum for accessing the tun-device). Noteworthy is that the first alternative (tsocks transparent proxying via SSH) is not depending on sysadmin priviledges.